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Florida school district contemplates using biometric systems


Principals of several school districts in Florida are seriously considering the installation of biometric scanners for schools, bus and other school facilities, such as canteens and libraries.

This came as a result of an anonymous survey of school principals commissioned by the Palm Beach School District. About 60 percent of those interviewed favored the implementation of a more reliable form of identification.

Those who are active in the school district, from teachers to those in the administrative offices support the installation of biometrics technologies in the school district as a centralized system for checking students’ attendance, checking out books in the library, paying for meals at the cafeteria and for monitoring movement of students within the school premises. Fingerprint scanners would be placed in strategic areas wherein students can easily pay for their lunches with a swipe of their thumbs.

School principals are also keen on installing biometric systems in school buses. The idea came from a pilot project wherein cafeterias were equipped with biometric. Using biometrics security and personnel management systems in school systems within the United States is not something new. In fact, some school districts already have had a form of the technology present for more than a decade.

Though positively received by some districts, the actual installation of the biometric fingerprint scanners is easier said than done. There are several issues that district school supervisors and principals first have to address before these devices can be installed in schools and buses alike. Issues like parents’ apprehension, safety codes and overall cost of the scanners first have to be ironed out before full implementation can commence.

Just how significant is biometric technology for personnel and student management?

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